Exhibitors at the Media + Entertainment Tech Expo 2019, Wednesday 17 July 2019, ICC Sydney, Darling Harbour, Sydney

I dropped into the Media + Entertainment Tech Expo 2019 trade show component on its first day to catch up on recent developments in hardware and software from the point of view of the self-funded independent media producer that I am. 

METexpo, for short, is the rebranded and relaunched biannual conference and trade show exhibition formerly referred to as SMPTE, not to be confused with the Australian section of the organization known as SMPTE standing for Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers. 

Although METexpo 2019 aimed to be more inclusive than previous SMPTE conferences and exhibitions, by  “focusing on all aspects of the industry that drives the ‘creation, distribution and consumption’ of media, entertainment and technology”, this year’s version was a much smaller affair than all the previous ones I had attended and many Australian and foreign brands and retailers were missing in action. 

Problems with the METexpo ticketing computer network meant that my exhibition pass could not be printed and thus could not be scanned. I got in the door by photographing the QR code in close-up and the door person scanned that successfully to her surprise. NOTE: Further captions for the images below coming soon.

Panasonic Leica DG Vario-Summilux 10-25mm f/1.7 Aspheric zoom lens, equivalent in 35mm sensor terms to 20mm through to 50mm. This is the zoom lens I wanted when I invested in the Micro Four Thirds system but nothing like it existed back then. This lens can pretty much do it all for most documentary stills photography and video.

Andrew Chan of SLR Magic with one of the company’s MicroPrime cinema lenses for X-mount and M43-mount cameras variously made by Blackmagic Design, Fujifilm, Olympus, Panasonic and others. SLR Magic also makes an excellent 1.3 to 10 stop variable neutral density filter solution perfectly suited to the MicroPrimes with their 82mm filter diameter as well as adapted to smaller filter diameter lenses via step-up rings.
SLR Magic MicroPrime Cine 25mm T1.3 M43-mount lens with SLR Magic 82mm Self-Locking Variable Neutral Density 0.4 to 1.8 filter.
A luvverly collection of SLR Magic MicroPrime Cine lenses and SLR Magic anamorphic lenses, with admirers. Please make mine a complete set of MicroPrimes in Fujifilm X-mount, comprising 12mm, 15mm, 18mm, 25mm, 35mm, 50mm and 75mm focal lengths. In 35mm sensor format terms, a set comprising 18mm, 22.5mm, 28mm, 37.5mm, 50mm, 75mm and 112.5mm, a near-perfect set of lenses for feature-style documentary and narrative moviemaking as well as stills photography in manual focus.
A luvverly collection of SLR Magic MicroPrime Cine lenses and SLR Magic anamorphic lenses, close-up.

Sigma stills and cinema lenses at the CR Kennedy section of METexpo 2019.

While previous SMPTE trade shows demanded at least one full day to get through all their exhibits, I found I could see everything of interest in the space of a morning due to the many no-shows this year.

I hope that future METexpos will see their exhibitor numbers climb back up but am wondering at the wisdom  of staging it every two years given the high pace of change within all the categories covered this year – “Audio Mixers, Audio Processing & effects, Audio Production, Cameras & Lenses, Capture Devices & Software, Cloud Technology, Delivery & DistributionDigital Solutions, Esports, IP Broadcast Solutions, Lighting, Microphones, Mobile/Vehicle Production, Motion Picture/Virtual Production, Motion Picture/Production, Networking Technologies, Post Production, Set Design/Props/Furniture, Workflow Solutions”.

Two important global Australian-based brands missing from METExpo 2019 were Blackmagic Design and Miller Tripods while the long list of other absent long-established and breakthrough companies in the media and entertainment technology aka MET space included Adobe, Canon, Dedolight, Dell, Dolby, Fujifilm, Hewlett-Packard, Pelican, Think Tank Photo, Vitec Group and its many brands, while Rotolight’s only inclusion this year was one boxed-up product on display in a vitrine in the CR Kennedy stand, a Rotolight Neo 2 HSS and continuous LED light unit.

I had particularly hoped to see, touch and try Blackmagic Design’s breakthrough Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K along with a range of suitable accessories, lenses and rigging, but was disappointed.

Meanwhile other brands of interest had much smaller displays of their products than usual and were minus the on-floor speakers and try-out displays of previous SMPTE trade shows.

A sad loss given the lack of all-in-one retailers in this country and especially Sydney, places where one can see, try and buy items of interest rather than going by word-of-mouth or Youtube reviews before placing back orders or ordering online from overseas.

One long-established MET trade show tradition that remained in full force is exhibitors’ tendency to ignore females on the show floor in favour of almost exclusively paying attention to the males of the species.

Useful if one is going about making documentary photographs as I was, standing up close to my subjects while they engage with each other and ignoring me as if I am invisible, but not so great if I wanted directly engage with exhibitors to ask questions and try out new items.

The METexpo 2019 modus operandi as I and a number of attendees I watched experienced it was essentially one of being left to our own devices to gaze into display cases or accost passing floor staff in search of answers about the items within.

I enjoyed a little face time, though, with Andrew Chan of SLR Magic, discussing his company’s range of MicroPrime cinema lenses in their Fujifilm X-mount and Micro Four Thirds mount versions as well as its apparently excellent SLR Magic 82mm Self-Locking Variable Neutral Density 0.4 to 1.8 and 86mm Solid Neutral Density 1.2 Image Enhancer Filter Kit (pardon the long-winded product name!).

With Fujifilm taking Super 35 video production more seriously with its X-T3 and X-H1 cameras, and hopefully even more so with possible successors X-T4 and X-H2, the need for geared cinema quality prime lenses like SLR Magic’s MicroPrimes can only increase.

As a documentary person, 1.3 to 10 stops variable neutral density solutions like this one by SLR Magic are a must and even more so with recent cinema and video cameras having higher base ISOs than on previous generation hardware.

Given my other duties as a carer and limited funds I was unable to attend the METexpo 2019 conference and had to miss out on the Women In Industry Function and Women in Media and Technology Breakfast but hope that they may prove to be turning points for female inclusion and visibility in the MET industries and especially METexpo itself.

Tech Notes

I made all the photographs illustrating this article with my Fujifilm X-Pro2 equipped with a Fujinon XF 16mm f/2.8 R WR “Fujicron” prime lens kindly loaned to me by Fujifilm Australia’s PR consultancy, and also carried a loaner Fujifilm X-H1 and Fujinon XF 18mm f/2.0 R prime lens as well as three of my own Fujinon lenses.

The 16mm lens’ fast back button focus and autofocus proved more useful in the circumstances than the much older 18mm lens, despite the 28mm equivalence of the latter being my all-time favourite focal length for immersive in-situ documentary photography and video.

I found that the 16mm “Fujicron” allowed me to quickly lean forward and back, left and right, in order to reframe my images as human elements constantly moved position relative to each other, and it proved quite a pleasurable experience.

Normally I would reserve the 24mm equivalence of 16mm for superwide establishing shots though I much prefer 21mm equivalent focal lengths for that purpose.

However, the Fujinon XF 16mm f/2.8 R WR’s width proved an asset under the trade show floor’s oftentimes difficult lighting and limited space and I rarely needed to crop my images to exclude extraneous details.

Help support ‘Untitled’

Clicking on the links and purchasing through them for our affiliate accounts at Adorama, Alien Skin, B&H Photo Video, SkylumSmallRig or Think Tank Photo helps us continue our work for ‘Unititled’.

  • FujifilmB&H
  • SLR Magic B&H
  • SLR Magic 82mm Self-Locking Variable Neutral Density 0.4 to 1.8 and 86mm Solid Neutral Density 1.2 Image Enhancer Filter KitB&H
  • SLR Magic MicroPrime Cine lensesB&H

The Beat: NAB 2019: PolarPro’s New Peter McKinnon Variable ND Filter

NAB 2019: Polar Pro’s New Peter McKinnon Variable ND Filter

polarpro_variablend_01_1024px
PolarPro Variable Neutral Density Filter, Peter McKinnon Edition.

“Polar Pro is slowly becoming one of my favorite companies. As with Aputure and Blackmagic Design, it seems they’re doing this crazy thing where they listen to their customers and make products that actually help people. So, that being said, the new “Peter McKinnon” branded filters are, quite frankly, super dope….

The filter is a fused, quartz glass, variable ND filter with apparently the lowest refractive index currently available….

The stop indicators are pretty rad, and they can really help you get the shot you want — perfectly exposed and consistent (as all things should be)….”

Specifications

  • Available in 2-5 and 6-9 stop variations.
  • Preset stop range eliminates any chance of cross polarization.
  • Zero vignetting down to 16mm focal length lenses.
  • Pure Fused Quartz ensures superior optical clarity over any glass on the market.
  • Includes a DefenderSlim cover for fingerprint-free installation.

PolarPro Variable ND Filter, Peter McKinnon Edition

Commentary

Variable neutral density filters aka VNDs are a mainstay of independent documentary movie production and the best are anything but cheap.

Given that one or two VNDs can replace five or more fixed density value neutral density filters, prices of the best VNDs compare well with those of sets of fixed NDs, so sticker price shock should not be a consideration if one is going for the best and most versatile production kit, one that will last for years through thick and thin.

PolarPro’s QuartzLine range of UV filters, fixed density ND filters and Circular Polarizers has been quietly satisfying the needs of drone operators, photographers and videographers with its brass traction-framed filters, and the company recently came to my attention with advance mention of a new concept in VND filters.

That new type of VND was shown off at NAB 2019, was covered by The Beat, and has been selling like crazy direct from the PolarPro online store.

I have never had the pleasure of using or seeing any PolarPro products in real life, but from what I have read they are outstanding.

I have been researching possible replacements for my ageing VND, a Genustech 77mm Eclipse ND Fader that was the most-recommended when I got back into moviemaking, and have decided to standardize on 82mm filters with step-up rings to help minimize vignetting when using them on wide lenses.

I began replacing my aluminium step-up rings with the excellent knurled brass traction frame step-up rings made by Breakthrough Photography a while ago, and have some Breakthrough Photography fixed ND, UV and CPL filters with which I am well pleased.

I discovered that brass filter frames are far less prone to binding than aluminium ones, and that knurled frames are better than non-knurled, the more knurling the better.

It was a little disappointing to learn that PolarPro’s Peter McKinnon Variable ND Filter comes with aluminium frames rather than brass ones but I am hoping for the best with their performance in the field and am waiting for reviews by well-qualified professional users to appear.

I am impressed that PolarPro has chosen to issue its VND in two densities, 2-5 and 6-9 stops, a wise move given the high base ISOs of many contemporary hybrid cameras.

Aurora-Aperture followed a similar path with its 1-7 and 4-11 VND pair while SLR Magic took another path again with its SLR Magic 82mm Self-Locking VND 0.4-1.8 plus 86mm Solid Neutral Density 1.2 Image Enhance Filter Kit providing a range of 1.3 to 10 stops with both filters combined.

The question now is going to be which pro-quality VND brand to opt for – PolarPro, Aurora-Aperture or SLR Magic?

Links

Help support ‘Untitled’

Clicking on the links below and purchasing through them or our affiliate accounts at B&H Photo Video, SmallRig or Think Tank Photo helps us continue our work for ‘Untitled’.

  • Aurora-Aperture FiltersB&H
  • Breakthrough Photography Filters and accessories – B&H
  • PolarPro QuartzLine Filters B&H
  • SLR Magic Neutral Density FiltersB&H

At Last! SLR Magic Releases Full Set of Affordable Cinema MicroPrimes for Fujifilm X-Mount Super 35/APS-C Cameras

I have been waiting for someone to announce a complete set of affordable, matched cinema prime  lenses for Fujifilm X-Mount Super 35/APS-C hybrid mirrorless cameras for a long time, at least since Fujifilm announced its then coming affordable MK-series of matched parfocal cinema zoom lenses, and finally, here they are, an initial set of six X-mount cinema prime lenses by Hong Kong-based cinema optics specialists SLR Magic ranging from 12mm through to 75mm with a (hopefully) possible 15mm also coming. 

Duclos Lenses came up with a Fujifilm X-Mount option for Veydra’s Mini Primes that can cover the Super 35/APS-C format.

I had thought that US company Veydra might be the first one to achieve this breakthrough but when they dropped plans for a very necessary wide-angle lens to complete its offerings, the writing was on the wall.

Now Veydra has been dropped altogether from B&H Photo Video, and the Veydra website appears to be semi-functional at best so it looks like the feisty little US left coast newcomer may be no more.

Before its apparent demise, Veydra had only released, from memory, five focal lengths suitable for adapting to Fujifilm’s APS-C/Super 35 X-mount cameras and that was courtesy of an optional X-Mount Kit for self-installation by purchasers.

The Veydras’ other built-in limitation was their Mini Primes’ adherence to a common 77mm filter diameter on all lenses rather than 82mm, the latter all the better to avoid vignetting in wider focal lengths.

Luckily the new SLR Magic MicroPrimes come with no such limitation, all coming with 82mm filter diameters suitable for use with the company’s own SLR Magic 82mm Self-Locking Variable Neutral Density 0.4 to 1.8 Filter (1.3 to 6 Stops) or other 82mm diameter variable NDs like those made by Aurora-Aperture, Simmod Lens and a host of other filter manufacturers, as well as fixed value neutral density filters by SLR Magic and a great many others.

Not just for video production?

fujinon_xf_18mm_f2_r_01_1024px_60pc
Fujinon XF 18mm f/2.0 R prime lens, regrettably much too slow to focus manually or via autofocus and its aperture ring too flakey and quirky for fast-paced professional work in stills and video, though some folks seem to like it for the quirkiness that made it frustrating for me.

There is no reason why cinema lenses cannot do sterling service for stills photography so long as their gearing does not get in the way.

Several of the SLR Magic Cinema MicroPrimes may well do a great job filling the gaps in Fujifilm’s current Fujinon XF prime lens offerings, and the 18mm MicroPrime may provide a great pro-quality alternative to the quirky Fujinon XF 18mm f/2.0 R lens so long as you use it with an electronic viewfinder given the former’s 82mm filter diameter which would intrude too much into the X-Pro2’s Advanced Hybrid Multi Viewfinder.

  • 12mm in APS-C = 18mm in 35mm sensor format
  • 18mm in APS-C = 27mm in 35mm sensor format
  • 25mm in APS-C = 37.5mm in 35mm sensor format
  • 35mm in APS-C = 52.5mm in 35mm sensor format
  • 50mm in APS-C = 75mm in 35mm sensor format
  • 75mm in APS-C = 112.5mm in 35mm sensor format
nikon_micro-nikkor_105mmf2.8_01_1024px_60pc
Nikon Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/2.8 manual focus, manual exposure macro lens, the one that got me into portrait photography. I would love a 105mm equivalent as a native X-mount lens.

Fujifilm does not currently offer a 12mm nor a 75mm prime lens, and I badly feel the lack of a professional quality 18mm when shooting immersive documentary photographs in crowds where there is simply no room to step backwards with less wide lenses and ultra-wide lenses are altogether too wide.

There is another advantage to a manual-focusing 18mm 28mm equivalent lens with a well-marked focusing scale – easily setting hyperfocal distance when shooting so-called “street photography”.

The SLR Magic 12mm may be suitable for architectural and scenic photography, provided its optical qualities test well, and the 75mm is close to my preferred full-face frontal focal length of 105mm in the 35mm sensor format.

It is currently unclear as to whether SLR Magic intends to release a 15mm X-mount MicroPrime, but that focal length would also have its uses for video and stills photography.

  • 15mm in APS-C = 22.5mm in 35mm sensor format
fujifiom_fujinon_xf_14mm_f2.8_r_01_1024px_80pc
Fujinon XF 14mm f/2.8 R prime lens with manual clutch focus.

One of my favourite focal lengths for truly immersive, highly emotive documentary photography is 21mm in the 35mm sensor format, and the 15mm MicroPrime comes close.

The Fujinon XF 14mm f/2.8 R is one of the far too few Fujifilm lenses that has manual clutch focus and hard stops at both ends of the distance scale, along with the XF 23mm f/1.4 R and XF 16mm f/1.4 R WR prime lenses.

When these manual clutch focusing primes first started appearing, I had hoped it was the start of Fujifilm adding this crucial ability to all future prime and zoom lenses but I was to be very disappointed.

As many cinematographers have variously stated about lenses without manual clutch focus or manual focusing rings, pulling focus on lenses without either sucks.

Especially when using follow-focus devices.

SLR Magic makes fixed and variable NDs as well as IR-cutting enhancer filters

The news of SLR Magic’s announcement of its MicroPrimes is recent and so far I have not come across any pre-release reviews of pre-production versions so have no idea of their optical quality and lack of optical distortion or otherwise.

I remain hopeful, though, and look forward to the full set of X-mount MicroPrimes finding its way to well-qualified professional videographers for assessment.

The Super 35 sensor format is a great one for narrative, commercial and feature-style documentary moviemaking though I also appreciate the grittier Super 16 documentary style afforded by Panasonic’s GH5 and GH5S, as well as the possibilities of the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K especially now that it has received its Blackmagic Raw firmware update.

Meanwhile I am thinking seriously about whether some of SLR Magic’s X-mount MicroPrimes may answer some of my long-standing need for professional-quality manual focus-capable primes for documentary and portrait stills photography in certain undercatered-for focal lengths.

Such lenses would do well on my Fujifilm X-Pro2 and even better on the amazing X-T3 and the even better-gripped X-H1 for stills and video, given the latter two cameras’ superior electronic viewfinders, though I certainly hope that the X-Pro3’s EVF improves radically over its predecessor’s EVF.

Fujifilm’s X-mount MKX 18-55mm and 50-135mm T2.9 parfocal cinema zoom lenses

Where to see, try and buy SLR Magic MicroPrime Cinema X-mount lenses in Sydney?

In the absence of an all-things-to-all-people megastore in Australia, and the difficulty of finding smaller brands like SLR Magic here in Sydney, I went looking for other possibilities and discovered the following:

  • Media + Entertainment Tech Expo, Sydney – exhibition 18-20 July 2019, venue location TBA at time of writing but likely to be either Darling Harbour or Moore Park.
  • C.R.Kennedy Photo Imaging – importer, distributor and retailer of a wide range of photo and video products including SLR Magic filters, lenses and other optical accessories. Many brands unavailable in retail stores here are imported and retailed by this company, such as G-Technology HDDs and SSDs, in my experience the most reliable mainstream brand of them all and yet oddly enough the hardest to find, even in Apple Stores which used to be the most reliable stockists. C.R.Kennedy most likely will be exhibiting at the above expo in July.

Links

Help support ‘Untitled’

Clicking on the links below and purchasing through them or our affiliate accounts at B&H Photo Video, SmallRig or Think Tank Photo helps us continue our work for ‘Untitled’.

  • Digital Cinema Lenses, Fujifilm X-MountB&H
  • Aurora-Aperture 82mm Power XND Mark II Variable ND 0.3 to 2.1 Filter (1 to 7-Stop)B&H
  • Aurora-Aperture 82mm Power XND Mark II Variable ND 1.5 to 3.3 Filter (5 to 11-Stop)B&H
  • Fujifilm XF LensesB&H
  • FUJIFILM MKX18-55mm T2.9 Lens (Fuji X-Mount)B&H
  • FUJIFILM MKX50-135mm T2.9 Lens (Fuji X-Mount)B&H
  • FUJIFILM X-H1 Mirrorless Digital Camera Body with Battery Grip KitB&H
  • FUJIFILM X-Pro2 Mirrorless Digital CameraB&H
  • FUJIFILM X-T3 Mirrorless Digital Camera Body with Battery Grip KitB&H
  • SLR Magic 82mm Image Enhancer Pro FilterB&H
  • SLR Magic 82mm Self-Locking Variable Neutral Density 0.4 to 1.8 Filter (1.3 to 6 Stops)B&H
  • SLR Magic 86mm Solid Neutral Density 1.2 Image Enhancer Filter (4-Stop)B&H
  • SLR Magic MicroPrime Cine 12mm T2.8 Lens (Fuji X Mount)B&H
  • SLR Magic MicroPrime Cine 18mm T2.8 Lens (Fuji X Mount)B&H
  • SLR Magic MicroPrime Cine 25mm T1.5 Lens (Fuji X Mount)B&H
  • SLR Magic MicroPrime Cine 35mm T1.3 Lens (Fuji X Mount)B&H
  • SLR Magic MicroPrime Cine 50mm T1.2 Lens (Fuji X Mount) – B&H
  • SLR Magic MicroPrime Cine 75mm T1.5 Lens (Fuji X Mount)B&H

Indy Mogul: ULTIMATE BUYER’S GUIDE to ND Filters

“… Neutral Density Filters are a necessary tool for exposure control, but does their price tag really affect their quality? Today Griffin sits down with 23 ND filters that range in different price tiers from $5 all the way to $580 to see! Today we hard tested 23 ND filters for their color and image quality, flare resistance, and their usefulness in timelapse situations. We test a range of ND’s [sic] from a set of general purpose ND3 filters, to Variable Density Filters, to heavily graded ND10 filters for their use in time-lapse photography. While every type of ND filter has it’s own use, we mainly set out to see if the price tag really affected image quality, and whether variable ND’s were much worse than single glass ND’s. …”

Breakthrough Photography’s brass traction-framed ND and other filters are a boon for those of us with damaged hands and fingers and are safer to handle in the field than smooth or slightly knurled aluminium frames.

Commentary

_DSF0716_cameraraw_square_1024px
Paul Leeming’s stripped-down Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K aka BMPCC 4K rig with 8Sinn cage, Sigma 18-35mm f/1.8 zoom lens, Metabones Speed Booster, Kenko aluminium step-up ring, Xume magnetic filter attachment system and Formatt Hitech Firecrest Ultra fixed neutral density filter.

Independent moviemaker and Panasonic Lumix brand ambassador Griffin Hammond’s documentary production insights and training have proven invaluable over the years since I invested in Lumix Micro Four Thirds cameras primarily for video.

The previous incarnation of the recently rejuvenated Indy Mogul YouTube channel not so much but that looks set to change now that it has been taken over by Ted Sim of the Aputure moviemaking equipment company and Griffin Hammond himself.

I don’t know anything about Mr Sim, Aputure and its products at the moment but Mr Hammond is a different story, having finally met him at the last SMPTE Sydney trade show after following his video work online for some time.

Clearly it is past time to look into Aputure’s products if I can find a local stockist for them.

Meanwhile, back to neutral density filters, both fixed and variable.

Variations in sharpness, colour casts and the dreaded X were considerations when I was searching for the best and most economical neutral density filters to buy when I got back into digital video and photography a few years ago.

I had used sets of square and rectangular high-end cinema filters for attachment to movie cameras via matte boxes years before, but no longer have the sorts of budget to afford such things nor the desire to cart them all about any more.

When I started looking into screw-on fixed and variable neutral density filters the most recommended brand at the time was Singh-Ray but the company’s VND cost a fortune and was out of reach.

Instead I settled on Genustech’s Eclipse Fader VND after reading a number of recommendations by independent documentary and music video cinematographers and opted for the 77mm version along with a set of aluminium step-up rings to common sizes.

The Genustech Fader acquitted itself well through a number of small projects but recently I began looking for replacements, whether fixed or variable NDs or both, that had the least possible colour cast and the maximum sharpness.

I am also considering making 82mm filters my standard for maximum versatility given some current and future lenses I may add to my kit have wider front elements than did my limited selection of starter lenses some years ago.

Australian cinematographer/director Paul Leeming recently showed me the stripped-down travel version of his Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K kit and how he attaches his 82mm Formatt Hitech Firecrest Ultra fixed ND filters via the Manfrotto Xume magnetic filter adapter system for fast easy and secure filter swapping.

Vignetting at the widest focal length is a consideration with the Sigma 18-35mm f/1.8 DC HSM Art zoom lens with Metabones Speed Booster attached though Mr Leeming assured me that, for the feature film he recently shot on the larger version of his BMPCC 4K rig, the vignetting was acceptable.

I continue to research the options but have now settled on the 82mm filter diameter and step-up rings made of brass rather than aluminium, which has a tendency to bind when screwing them on and off in the field.

I may well choose another brand of variable neutral density filter, bearing in mind factors like colour cast, sharpness, the x-effect at maximum density, the absence or presence of a self-locking device, and, now that cameras are appearing with higher base ISOs when shooting HLG footage in particular, a maximum density in the 10 or 11 stop range.

I may also add a set of 82mm fixed value neutral density filters for the other cameras I use and will most likely stick with Breakthrough Photography brand fixed NDs for that as I am rather fond of the company’s beautifully designed and made knurled brass-framed UV, CPL and ND filters.

Other screw-on circular fixed and variable neutral density filters and step-up rings

Links

Help support ‘Untitled’

Clicking on the links below and purchasing through them or our affiliate accounts at B&H Photo Video, SmallRig or Think Tank Photo helps us continue our work for ‘Untitled’.

  • Aurora-Aperture filtersB&H
  • Breakthrough Photography filtersB&H
  • Formatt Hitech Firecrest Ultra filtersB&H
  • Genustech filtersB&H
  • Heliopan step-up ringsB&H
  • Sensei Pro step-up ringsB&H
  • Sigma 18-35mm f/1.8 DC HSM Art Lens for Canon EFB&H

Frank Glencairn: Why the new Pocket Cinema Camera 2.0 isn’t actually a successor of the original Pocket, and why it doesn’t mat[t]er.

https://frankglencairn.wordpress.com/2018/04/19/why-the-new-pocket-cinema-camera-2-0-isnt-actually-a-successor-of-the-original-pocket-and-why-it-doesnt-mater/

“… So it’s that time of the year, when the whole industry looks at Vegas, eagerly awaiting the new game-changer collection. And this time, Blackmagic pretty much mopped the floor, with all the other new cameras that came out this year, by taking the GH5s (IMX294 or variant) sensor, building a better camera with it, and selling it for have [sic] of the price, while throwing in a full blown, Hollywood grade postproduction package on top of it….

… It’s not as small and stealthy as the original Pocket, but it’s a pretty amazing camera, that still lets you steal shots, while looking like a tourist with a DSLR, if you have to (come on – we all did that at least a few times).

It’s a good size and weight to put it on a one hand gimbal and run all day with it. And if you don’t have the budget for an Ursa, it’s a great camera that you can rig up cine style with all the bells and whistles, and shoot commercials or even narrative….”

blackmagic_pocket_cinema_camera_4k_bmpcc4k_06_1024px_60pc
Blackmagic Design’s Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K aka BMPCC 4K with Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-40mm f/2.8 Pro zoom lens, able to be easily handheld in ways that its Blackmagic cinema and production camera ancestors never could.

Blackmagic Production Camera 4K aka BMPC 4K in EF and PL mounts

Now that Blackmagic Design has removed the pages for its Blackmagic Cinema and Production cameras with Canon EF, Micro Four Thirds and PL lens mounts from its website, good quality product shots are harder to find and so worth preserving here for future reference and comparison with new products like the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K.

The images in this gallery are of the last models in Blackmagic Design’s now-defunct camera series, the Blackmagic Production Camera 4K with EF or PL lens mounts, and apparently were intended for use in the production of serial television series rather than cinema productions.

I have not had the pleasure of using any of Blackmagic Design’s cinema or production cameras, but the proprietor of a production equipment rental service once told me that local well-funded documentary producers were particularly fond of using his Blackmagic rental cameras with Canon EF L-series lenses and adapted Nikon stills photography lenses.

Australian-based Director of Photography John Brawley has often had early access to Blackmagic Design cameras and has shared early footage from them, so it is worth checking his blog every so often.

Mr Brawley is an enthusiast for Micro Four Thirds system lens and Olympus M43 cameras, and it will be interesting to see what he makes of the BMPCC 4K in conjunction with his ever-growing collection of Olympus and SLR Magic lenses, illustrated above.

Links

Help support ‘Untitled’

Clicking on these affiliate links and purchasing through them helps us continue our work for ‘Untitled: Stories of Creativity, Innovation, Success’.

  • Blackmagic Design Pocket Cinema Camera 4KB&H
  • Blackmagic Design Mini XLR Cable for Video Assist/4K, Set of 2, 19.5″, HYPERD/AXLRMINI2 – B&H

News Shooter: SLR Magic Circular Fixed ND Filters Review – COMMENTARY

http://www.newsshooter.com/2017/10/26/slr-magic-circular-nd-filters/

“The most common option for shooters using still photography lenses on digital cameras that don’t have in-built ND is to use a variable ND filter, but often this can lead to compromises in image quality. Using fixed ND filters often results in better overall image quality, but it does come at the cost of convenience….”

Commentary

The esoteric arts of creating top quality neutral density filters have come to the fore again in recent months with Breakthrough Photography’s Dark CPL & X4 GND Kickstarter campaign and Formatt Hitech’s release of their new Firecrest Ultra range.

I have been relying on one of the most highly recommended variable ND filters for some time, the Genustech Eclipse ND Fader, and it has proven itself well enough in the field though its technology is now somewhat behind the times.

I default to relying on Breakthrough Photography’s excellent brass traction-framed step-up rings as well as their brass traction-framed X4 UV filters and have been pleased with their performance.

But I have resisted investing in a set of circular fixed ND filters in the range of strengths I have been considering – 2 stops, 4 stops, 6 stops, 8 stops and possibly 10 stops for shooting time lapses in the way that Griffin Hammond demonstrates.

As much as I really like Breakthrough Photography’s optics, its manufacturing quality and especially its brass traction frames, I find the company’s circular fixed ND values of 3, 6 and 10 too limiting for video and 15 stops may not be necessary unless using a high base ISO camera like the Sony a7S series.

I need to shoot video run-and-gun as well as fixed-camera, with one, two or three cameras as needed, and that means more than one set of NDs or one variable ND.

The solution Matthew Allard writes about here – “I would buy a variable ND and several fixed ND filters – probably 0.9, 1.2, 2.1 and 3.0.” – has merit and I am now seriously considering buying my own SLR Magic fixed-plus-variable ND set.

Whether 2, 4, 6 and 8 stops or 3, 5, 7 and 10 stops, or something else again, the idea of combining such a fixed ND set with a matching 10-stop maximum variable ND filter is tempting.

Links

Help support ‘Untitled’

Clicking on these affiliate links and purchasing through them helps us continue our work for ‘Untitled: Stories of Creativity, Innovation, Success’.

  • Breakthrough Photography 62mm X4 UV FilterB&H
  • Format Hitech Firecrest UltraB&H
  • Genustech 82mm Eclipse ND Fader FilterB&H
  • SLR Magic 82mm Circular Fixed ND Filter – B&H – coming soon
  • SLR Magic 82mm Image Enhancer Pro FilterB&H
  • SLR Magic 82mm Self-Locking Variable Neutral Density 0.4 to 1.8 Filter (1.3 to 6 Stops) – B&H
  • SLR Magic 86mm Image Enhancer ND Filter (4 STOP)B&H
  • Xume Magnetic Filter Adapter SystemB&H

ProAV TV: GH5 6K Anamorphic Firmware Upgrade – with Daniel Peters

“We have a guest post today from Cinematographer Daniel Peters, who shares with us his experiences using the new GH5 Firmware upgrade allowing 6K Anamorphic filming along with using the anamorphic lenses from SLR Magic….”

Links

Help support ‘Untitled’

Clicking on these affiliate links helps us continue our work for ‘Untitled: Stories of Creativity, Innovation, Success’.

  • Atomos Ninja Inferno 7″ 4K HDMI Recording Monitor and accessoriesB&H
  • Lexar Professional 2000x UHS-II SDHC Memory Card, 32GB, 64GB or 128GBB&H
  • Movcam Cage Kit for Panasonic GH5B&H
  • Panasonic DMW-XLR1 XLR Microphone AdapterB&H
  • Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5 Mirrorless Micro Four Thirds Digital Camera (Body Only)B&H
  • Panasonic V-Log L Function Activation Code for DMC-GH4, DC-GH5, and DMC-FZ2500B&H
  • SLR Magic 2x Anamorphot-CINE Lens Set with 35, 50, 70mm Lenses (MFT Mount)B&H
  • SLR Magic 35mm, 50mm, 70mm 2x Anamorphot-CINE Lenses (MFT Mount), sold individuallyB&H

Nick Driftwood: 8K Lumix GH5 Hi Rez Anamorphic – Hybrid Log Gamma – All Intra HLG Pro Rez to HEVC using Handbrake

“Music by Nick Driftwood. This is a 10-bit 420 encode using Handbrake HEVC x265. Now you can use Handbrake to encode your HLG Rec2020 / videos. This is an extreme example at hi rez anamorphic but basically the settings for handbrake h265 HEVC encodes are the same. Use the CRF constant Rate Factor to slide/change quality (lower is better quality but longer encodes).

Use chrome or other compatible browser to view upto 8K (Anamorphic x2 desqueeze to 9 884 pixels x 3 744 pixels in great quality INTRA).

Download special commit of Handbrake or info to build your own from here: https://goo.gl/AzFyLt

The critical thing to remember is to insert the text ‘transfer=arib-std-b67’ into the Additional Options box.”

Links

Help support ‘Untitled’

Clicking on these affiliate links helps us continue our work for ‘Untitled: Stories of Creativity, Innovation, Success’.

  • Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5 Mirrorless Micro Four Thirds Digital Camera (Body Only)B&H
  • Panasonic V-Log L Function Activation Code for DMC-GH4, DC-GH5, and DMC-FZ2500B&H
  • Atomos Ninja Inferno 7″ 4K HDMI Recording Monitor and accessoriesB&H
  • SLR Magic 35mm, 50mm, 70mm 2x Anamorphot-CINE Lenses (MFT Mount), sold individuallyB&H
  • SLR Magic 2x Anamorphot-CINE Lens Set with 35, 50, 70mm Lenses (MFT Mount)B&H
  • SLR Magic 25mm T0.95 HyperPrime Cine III Lens and Anamorphot-40 1.33x Anamorphic Adapter Kit (MFT)B&H
  • SLR Magic Anamorphot-40 1.33x Anamorphic Adapter (Compact) – B&H
  • SLR Magic Anamorphot 133X – 40 With Built-In RangefinderB&H
  • SLR Magic Anamorphot-50 1.33x Anamorphic AdapterB&H
  • SLR Magic 25mm T0.95 HyperPrime Cine III Lens (MFT Mount)B&H
  • SLR Magic Cine 35mm T0.95 Mark II Lens with MFT Mount – B&H
  • SLR Magic Cine 35mm T1.4 Mark II Lens with Micro Four Thirds Mount – B&H
  • SLR Magic HyperPrime 50mm T0.95 Lens with MFT Mount – B&H